The Lion Clan was founded by Akodo, child of the Moon and Sun. When Akodo sought a bride, he did not seek out a pretty Doji girl, for he did not wish to be a servant to the Crane Clan. He found a beautiful strong-willed woman named Matsu and tried to woo her for his own. Matsu was a proud woman who would have nothing to do with the samurai and took his courtship as an insult. She challenged him to combat and Akodo agreed. The duel between Akodo and Matsu is a classic tale that is told again and again by storytellers, and often depicted in art and theater. The winner, it is said, would also win the Clan. Each of the combatants, however, added a condition. Akodo added the condition that if she won, Matsu would have to marry him. Matsu added the condition that if he won, she would not have to marry him. the ending of the duel depends on who tells the tale, but the outcome is always the same: Akodo wins, and Matsu swears fealty to him but does not have to marry him.
The Lion Clan is the traditional defender of the Emerald Throne. A Matsu samurai is known for his passion and his temper. He is quick to judge and quick to take insult, and he never takes insult lightly. An Akodo samurai is also known for passion and courage, but he is also known for his knowledge of tactics and leadership. No army that has an Akodo as a general has ever lost a battle. While the Matsu win with fierceness and fearlessness, the Akodo is the master tactician. Both are regarded as the bravest of all the samurai of Rokugan. A tale is often told about a famous ambush against the First Hantei. The Emperor's bodyguard, Akodo Sato, threw himself from his horse and gave it to the Emperor so he could escape while Sato stayed behind to keep the enemy occupied. The shugenja family of the Lion Clan - Kitsu - is not highly regarded in shugenja circles. They regard the Kitsu School as "old fashioned" and too entrenched in tradition. This complaint could be made about many Lion, however.
Akodo Bushi School
"Any man can be prepared to kill.
Kitsu Shugenja School
Akodo - Akodo Toturi, the Empire's greatest strategist, is Champion of the Lion Clan. The Akodo School teaches the benefits of forethought compared to pure action. Benefit +1 Perception
Matsu - The Matsu family has always been led a samurai-maiden. Matsu Tsuko is the proud beautiful and ferocious daimyo of the Akodo family's chief rival. Benefit +1 Strength
Kitsu - The Lion do not put a lot of faith in shugenja magic during battles, but the Kitsu family still does research to educate the samurai on the supernatural tactics of their enemies. Benefit +1 Intelligence
The Lion's View of the Other Clans:
|"They are courageous and fearless in their duty, and we owe them much for the protection the have given us. We respect them for their strength and cunning on the battlefield (even if their manners are a bit uncouth), but we do not trust them."|
|"They are quick to gather their gold and their favors, but are slow to move to the battlefield. If they are so unwilling to part with their money, how unwilling will they be to part with their lives?"|
|"Like the Crane, they spend too much time in their temples and not enough time learning the ways of the world. If they truly wished to find wisdom, they will come down from their mountains, for they cannot find it up there."|
|"What can be said of the Dragon can be doubly said of the Phoenix. Their samurai are soft, relying on shugenja to support their courage. Distrust any who speak of peace when the battle has already been engaged."|
|"A Scorpion is to be despised, but never underestimated. Trust a Scorpion to betray you, and betray you in suck a way that you have no choice of recourse. That is their way, and it is as deadly as any other."|
|"Their horses are mighty and their tactics are sound, but they are not used to our ways. They have spent too long a time from the Empire, and they have much to learn, and we should be the ones who teach them."|